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Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commisssion Report 

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. . examination of the context, causes, sequence and 
consequence of the events of November 3, 1979 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2012 with funding from 

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 



Presented to the residents of Greensboro, 

the City, the Greensboro Truth and Community 

Reconciliation Project and other public 

bodies on May 25, 2006. 


Cover images courtesy of 

The News & Record, Lewis A. Brandon, III, Rachel Gold- 
stein, Kristi Parker, Laura Registrato and Matthew Spencer. 




Introduction 2 

Background 2 

Findings and conclusions 6 

involved parties 


Ku Klux Klan and National Socialist Party of America (Nazis) 


Workers Viewpoint Organization (Communist Workers Party) 


Greensboro Police Department 


Federal law enforcement 


Morningside Homes residents 


Key issues 


Violent language and provocation 


Injustice in the justice system 


City government and community response 


Fear and silence 


Grassroots organizing and connection to community concerns 








Trutli-seei(ing and resistance 


Moving forward: Recommendations 




institutional reform 


Criminal justice and civil remedies 


Citizen transformation/engagement 


The way forward 






*-. M 




The Mandate of the Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission (GTRC) re- 
flects that, "There comes a time in the life of every community when it must look 
humbly and seriously into its past in order to provide the best possible foundation 
for moving into a future based on healing and hope." We offer this report in our 
Mandate's spirit, acknowledging that healing, hope and reconciliation are long-term 
goals that must take place across what currently are deep divides of distrust and skep- 
ticism in our community. 

Our task was to examine the "context, causes, sequence and consequences," and to 
make recommendations for community healing around the tragedy in Greensboro, 
N.C., on Nov. 3, 1979, which resulted in the deaths of five anti-Klan demonstrators: 
Cesar Vicente Cauce, 25; Michael Ronald Nathan, M.D., 32; William Evan Sampson, 
31 ; Sandra Neely Smith, 28; and James Michael Waller, M.D., 36; and the wounding 
of demonstrators Paul Bermanzohn, Claire Butler, Tom Clark, Nelson Johnson, Rand 
Manzella, Don Pelles, Frankie Powell, Jim Wrenn; Klansman Harold Flowers, and 
news photographer David Dalton. 

Even though we looked at a much bigger picture than any court has painted or than any 
one group of people can tell, this is still a story that is necessarily limited in its scope 
and depth. We do believe, however, that our efforts have taken us some distance away 
from the half-truths, misunderstandings, myths and hurtful interpretations that have 
marked the story until now. We hope that our contribution to Greensboro's reckoning 
with its past - completed with the invaluable assistance of numerous participants and 
supporters in this community and elsewhere - will provide a solid foundation for the 
healing and hope that our Mandate foresees. 


On Nov. 3, 1979, in the absence of a dissuasive police presence, a caravan of white su- 
premacists confronted demonstrators preparing for a "Death to the Klan" rally planned 
in the city's black Momingside Homes public housing community by the Communist 
Workers Party (CWP), previously known as the Workers Viewpoint Organization 
(WVO). In addition to the five demonstrators killed, at least ten others were wounded, 
and numerous residents and other witnesses were traumatized. Klan and Nazi mem- 
bers, some of whom were filmed by news cameras as they shot into the crowd, claimed 
self-defense and were twice acquitted of all criminal charges by all-white juries. 

After more than two decades, the two criminal trials, and a civil trial that found mem- 

bers of the Greensboro Police Department jointly liable with Klan and Nazi members 
for the wrongful death of one victim, many in the Greensboro community still did not 
feel that justice had been served. For this reason, former members of the CWP joined 
with other community members and supporters to initiate the Greensboro Truth and 
Community Reconciliation Project (GTCRP), launching a democratic process that 
engaged the community in nominating and selecting the seven members of this inde- 
pendent Commission, empaneled on June 12, 2004. 

We assessed the evidence gathered from the three trials, internal records from the 
Greensboro Police Department and federal law enforcement, newspaper and maga- 
zine articles, academic literature, and some 200 interviews and personal statements 
given in private and at our public hearings. The following pages summarize our find- 
ings, conclusions and recommendations after nearly two years of investigative work 
and community engagement. 

The evidence and multiple interpretations that we have uncovered in our research 
reveal a richly complex story of how Nov. 3, 1979, happened and its meaning for the 
community. However, serious limitations in the resources available to us, as well as 
fear of and hostility toward our process, have restricted our ability to review all the 
evidence available. The truth we have found is necessarily imperfect because new 
facts might later come to light that would demand new or altered conclusions. Indeed 
it is our hope that others who come after us will continue to perfect the collective 
truth of this event. This is the very nature of scientific inquiry. While the facts of 
the incident are indeed complex, through rigorous review and impartial weighing of 
available evidence and corroboration, we have arrived at well-documented and sup- 
ported conclusions. 

We view this report as the beginning of a citizen effort toward investigation and dia- 
logue, rather than the end. 

*^^ . 

SMITH AND JAMES WALLER, (photo by kristi parker) 

■*"' ;, "rfrir,*? ^>- 



Ku Klux Klan and the National Socialist Party of America (Nazi) 

The Commission finds that on the morning of Nov. 3, 1979, members of the Klan/Nazi 
caravan headed for Greensboro with malicious intent. At a minimum, they planned 
to disrupt the parade and assault the demonstrators (by throwing eggs), violating the 
marchers' constitutional rights to free speech and assembly. Further, we believe there 
is sufficient evidence to conclude that they intended to provoke a violent confronta- 
tion and that this was broadly understood among those present in the multiple plan- 
ning discussions. Those who left their cars to engage in violence did so willingly. 
More importantly, Klan and Nazi members have admitted since the event that they 
intentionally came prepared to use deadly force in order to be victorious in any vio- 
lence that occurred. 

But not all caravan members bear equal responsibility. We find the heaviest burden 
of responsibility is on those (Roland Wood, Coleman Pridmore, Jack Fowler, David 
Matthews, and Jerry Paul Smith) who, after they returned to their cars and their path 
of exit was cleared, went to the trunk of the last car to retrieve weapons. They then 
fired at demonstrators, fatally wounding Nathan, Waller, and Cauce when they were 
unarmed. They also wounded Bermanzohn, Wrenn, Powell, Clark, Manzella and Dal- 
ton when they were unarmed. The fourth fatality, Sandi Smith, was also unarmed, 
although she was in the vicinity of someone who was firing at the Klansmen and Nazis 
and could have been hit by someone returning fire. Sampson had a handgun, and was 
firing it when he was fatally shot. 

Workers Viewpoint Organization 

(Communist Workers Party) 

We also find that some, albeit lesser, responsibility must lie with the demonstrators 
who beat on the caravan cars as they passed. Some CWP members also brought guns 
to the rally and fired them in the direction of the Nazi-Klan members. However, we 
find that the CWP fired after the Klan had fired a minimum of two shots and perhaps 
as many as five shots first. FBI evidence indicated that 1 8 shots were fired from loca- 
tions occupied by the CWP and demonstrators and 21 were fired from locations oc- 

cupied by the Nazi-Klan. However, we find the multiple revisions by the FBI of its 
own testimony make it unreliable evidence. 

The Commission finds that the WVO leadership was very naive about the level of 
danger posed by their rhetoric and the Klan's propensity for violence, and they even 
dismissed concerns raised by their own members. However, we also find that this 
miscalculation was caused in part by the Greensboro Police Department, which did 
not inform either the WVO or Momingside residents about the Klan's plans and its 
coordination with other racist groups. 

Greensboro Police Department 

Despite the obvious and important roles of the above participants, the majority of 
commissioners find the single most important element that contributed to the violent 
outcome of the confrontation was the absence of police.' Hostility between the WVO 
and white supremacist groups ran high and was inflamed by violent language on both 
sides. Yet vocal expression of political disagreement is the lifeblood of a healthy de- 
mocracy. The two parties had met before in China Grove, N.C., in July 1979, ex- 
changed insults and jeers, brandished weapons, and yet no violence resulted. We be- 
lieve that this outcome in China Grove was due to the presence of three uniformed 
police officers, who did nothing other than be visibly present between the groups. 

We find that it was reasonably foreseeable that any further contact between the groups 
would result in violence, given 

■ the heated and armed confrontation in China Grove, in which the 
protestors had burned the Confederate flag and the Klan and Nazis had 
been forced to retreat inside the building; 

■ the long history of the Klan as a terrorist organization that stirs fear and 
passion in communities targeted by this violence; 

■ intense political opposition between the two groups; 

■ aggressive verbal challenges made by the CWP; 

■ discussions among the Klan and Nazis about bringing guns. 

In fact, Det. Jerry Cooper and GPD photographer J.T. Matthews were present, but did not make their presence known 
and so had no effect on preventing the violence. 

The police were fully aware of all this information, and in fact their own paid infor- 
mant, the late Klansman Eddie Dawson, acted in a leadership role in bringing the two 
sides into contact. Dawson's police handlers had full knowledge of this role. Based on 
the confrontation at China Grove, we believe that even a small but noticeable police 
presence would almost certainly have prevented loss of life on Nov. 3, 1979. 

Nevertheless, police made decisions 

■ not to warn the demonstration organizers about the known Klan and Nazi 
plans to confront and probably provoke physical violence, or that the Klan 
had obtained a copy of the parade permit; 

■ explicitly to be five to 20 blocks away, and in fact repeatedly direct officers 
away from the designated parade starting point, even after it was known that 
the caravan was heading there; 

■ among key event commanders not to monitor constantly the situation using 
hand radios; 

■ not to stop or even noticeably accompany the caravan as it headed to the 
starting point where police knew no officers were present; 

■ not to order tactical units to proceed toward the designated parade starting 
point in an attempt to get in between the Klan/Nazis and demonstrators, or 
even to get into standby position, after it was clear the caravan was heading 
toward the parade; 

■ not to intervene or stop most of the cars fleeing the scene after it was known 
that shots had been fired. 

The GPD showed a stunning lack of curiosity in planning for the safety of the event. 
When Dawson expressed a desire to cancel the march. Detectives R.L. Talbott and 
Jerry Cooper and City Attorney Skip Warren did not ask why. Similarly, when Daw- 
son requested a copy of the permit and admitted that he was a Klansman, Capt. Larry 
Gibson did not inquire about his intentions. 

We find that the GPD's decisions and records of planning discussions indicate that 
they accepted uncritically almost everything informant Dawson said. When Dawson 
reported that any confrontation would happen at the end of the march, Capt. Trevor 
Hampton, Gibson and Lt. Sylvester Daughtry decided that the back up tactical units 
would not be in position until 30 minutes before the noon starting time of the parade. 


even though the assembly time pubHcly advertised on posters was at 1 1 a.m. 

Likewise, the GPD knew that the Klan had a copy of the parade route and that Dawson 
had repeatedly stated that the Klan had met many times to discuss plans to follow the 
marchers, heckle them and possibly assault them by throwing eggs. No officer recalls 
any discussion in any planning meetings of the likely consequences of this assault 
on already emotionally charged anti-Klan demonstrators in a black neighborhood. In 
contrast, when the GPD received intelligence from a police officer that a Nazi from 
Winston-Salem planning to attend the march might bring a machine gun with the 
intent to "shoot up the place," the police summarily dismissed this information as an 
"unconfirmed rumor." 

Role of GPD Informant Dawson 

The role of Eddie Dawson as a police informant within the Klan exceeded that of a 
typical informant. Dawson made the initial racist, virulently anti-communist speech 
at the Klan rally designed to incite a confrontation with the WVO; he arranged for 
the assembly point for Klan and Nazi members prior to going to the parade; he was in 
regular contact with Klan leader Virgil Griffin to discuss plans to disrupt the parade; 
he obtained a copy of the parade permit and route; he drove the route with Klansmen 
the night before the parade; he pointed out the route prior to leaving the Klan as- 
sembly point; he rushed people into cars at 1 1 a.m. to get to the parade. When Klans- 
men leaving the house asked, "Who's running this thing?" Klan leader Virgil Griffin 
pointed to Dawson and said, "I guess he is." Eddie Dawson got in the lead car and led 
the caravan to the parade starting point. 

Informants are by definition party to criminal activity, but we find that the decision to 
pay an informant and fail to intervene when he takes a leadership role to provoke and 
orchestrate a criminal act, with the full knowledge of police handlers, is negligent and 
unconscionably bad policing. 

Low profile 

The GPD records and testimony show that it was Deputy Chief Walter A. Burch (not 
Hampton, as often asserted), who made the decision to take a "low profile," keeping 
officers out of sight in order to avoid provoking a confrontation with the marchers. 
Given the enmity between police and WVO, we find that some version of "low pro- 

file" was indeed reasonable. However, the police discussion of this low-profile ap- 
proach in relation to Nov. 3, 1979, assumes that there were only two choices available: 
full presence in riot gear or removing officers to locations too far away to intervene 
when guns were fired. 

There was, however, a range of intermediate positions that also could have been con- 
sidered "low profile." 

Since intelligence from multiple sources indicated that violence was likely, police 
clearly were negligent because they took no action to prevent it. However, nearly all 
commissioners further believe that the totality of evidence reasonably suggests to the 
layperson that mere negligence alone is not an adequate explanation. No evidence has 
been found that indicates there was any conspiracy between the police or between 
the police and the Klan/Nazis to kill the demonstrators. However, the knowledge and 
subsequent deliberate actions (and failures to act) on the part of key police officers 
directly contributed to the violence that the police knew was reasonably foreseeable. 
Even though no legal basis for law enforcement involvement in a conspiracy was 
found in the trials, the majority of commissioners believe there was intentionality 
among some in the department to fail to provide adequate information or to take 
steps to adequately protect the marchers. Not every officer was party to either the 
intelligence or key decisions, but certainly Cooper, Talbott, Capt. Byron Thomas (all 
from the Criminal Intelligence Division), Gibson, Daughtry (from the Field Services 
Bureau), Lt. Paul Spoon, and Hampton (from the Field Operations Bureau) all were 
present in intelligence meetings and participated in key decision-making. 

While nearly all Commissioners find sufficient evidence that some officers were de- 
liberately absent, we also unanimously concur that the conclusions one draws from 
this evidence is likely to differ with one's life experience. Those in our community 
whose lived experience is of government institutions that fail to protect their interests 
are understandably more likely to see "conspiracy." Those accustomed to reliable 
government protection are more likely to see "negligence," or no wrongdoing on the 
part of law enforcement officers. We believe this is one reason the community is 
polarized in interpreting this event. 

Change in parade starting point 

Police and city officials' most often repeated reason for why there were no police 


present on Nov. 3, 1979, when the Klan and Nazi caravan arrived was that the WVO 
had changed the location of the parade starting point. However, the Commission finds 
that the GPD's own records and testimony reveal that this quite simply is not true. 
The WVO designated on its parade permit application that Everitt and Carver was the 
starting point. At the time that WVO parade organizer Nelson Johnson applied for the 
permit, he specifically explained to Gibson the discrepancy between the starting point 
and the information on WVO posters that mentioned the Windsor Center as a gather- 
ing place. Indeed, internal police records show that the discrepancy was repeatedly 
discussed in several police planning meetings and it was repeatedly emphasized that 
the starting point was to be at Everitt and Carver. 

Protecting unpopular and hostile citizens 

The Commission finds strong evidence that members of the police department al- 
lowed their negative feelings toward Communists in general, and outspoken black 
activist and WVO leader Nelson Johnson in particular, to color the perception of the 
threat posed by these groups. At the same time, we find that the GPD also exhibited 
a clear pattern of underestimating the risks posed by the KKK, which amounted to a 
careless disregard for the safety of the marchers and the residents of the Momingside 
neighborhood where the rally took place. 

We understand that police work is difficult, particularly in volatile social and political 
times. Complex decisions and rapid judgment calls are common, and police depart- 
ments often have the difficult but crucial job of protecting those whose views are 
distasteful to the majority, who are hostile to the police themselves, and who may act 
to obstruct protection. For example, two days before the march. Nelson Johnson pub- 
licly declared, "We say to Mayor Jim Melvin and the police, stay out of our way. We 
will defend ourselves." On the morning of Nov. 3, 1979, as police officers attempted 
to contact Nelson Johnson to discuss the police arrangements for the parade, openly 
hostile protestors refused to speak with the officers and chanted "Death to the Pigs." 

However, the Commission strongly emphasizes that hostility and verbal abuse did not 
preclude the marchers' right to police protection. The police knew this enmity existed. 
Nevertheless, Capt. Gibson delivered the explicit promise of protection for the safety 
of the marchers and their First Amendment rights when Johnson was issued a parade 
permit. This promise of protection was even more significant given the requirement of 
the parade permit that the protesters be unarmed. Unfortunately for the whole com- 
munity, the police failed to carry out the promised protection. 

Police are public servants and have the duty to undertake due diligence to plan safe- 
guards and provide protection even for people expressing unpopular points of view. 
Indeed, civil and human rights do not derive their meaning from their protection for 
the universally adored and cooperative. Rights only have meaning when they apply 
to everyone, even those whose views may be seen as threatening. Further, officers are 
surely trained to deal with this eventuality as it is a routine occurrence in police work. 
The inevitable tension between providing safety and protecting rights is territory that 
all healthy democracies must navigate. 

Federal law enforcement 

Although not legally bound to do so, we believe it was immoral and unconscionable 
for the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms - which both had their 
own inside intelligence on the Klan and Nazis about the potential for violence on Nov. 
3, 1979 - to fail to share that information with local law enforcement. This indepen- 
dent information, taken together with intelligence from Dawson, would have provided 
a more robust picture of the threat. 

The BATF had an undercover agent among the Nazis, Bernard Butkovich. Although 
he certainly did nothing to prevent it, based on the information available to us we do 
not find that agent Butkovich acted to provoke the violence. Acting undercover often 
requires an agent to feign support for violent ideas, but the facts we have do not lead 
us to believe Butkovich incited these feelings where they did not already exist. How- 
ever, federal agencies exercise very tight control over evidence relevant to their op- 
erations and agents. Therefore, as a general problem, citizens often find it extremely 
difficult to document any inappropriate behavior by federal agents. 

Morningside Homes community 

The parade permit meant that the WVO had permission from the city to march. The 
WVO did not legally need permission from Morningside residents to march. How- 
ever, as a self-described anti-racist organization explicitly advocating for the empow- 
erment of working-class black people, it should have understood that it had an ethical 
obligation to ask permission of the residents before staging the parade in their neigh- 


borhood, rather than simply informing them. This is especially true given the risks in- 
volved with the nature of the march and organizers who had aggressively challenged 
the Klan and stoked animosity with the police. 

Not all Momingside residents were comfortable with the planned march. Following 
the shootings, some expressed resentment that they had been exposed to risk and trau- 
ma. However, the WVO felt it had sufficient support and personal ties with the Mom- 
ingside community after years of working on housing and education issues there. The 
WVO had held a meeting with the Neighborhood Residents Council (NRC) to review 
the plans for the march. Unfortunately, the NRC did not adequately inform Moming- 
side residents about the upcoming event and must bear some of the responsibility for 
the breakdown in communication. While the WVO did leaflet in this and other public 
housing communities along the route, commissioners agree that the march organizers 
exposed Momingside residents to a risk they had not accepted as a community. 

Finally, the fear produced by the history of the Klan and this event and its aftermath 
in particular means that many in black working-class communities, and especially 
former residents of Momingside, are still afraid to talk about this issue. For this reason 
there may well be other viewpoints in support of the WVO held by people who have 
not felt at liberty to speak. 


Violent language and provocation 

Much of the public debate about the causes of the Nov. 3, 1979, incident has centered 
on the role of aggressive speech in bringing about violence. 

The Klan's racist rhetoric was plainly intended to provoke. Just prior to the confronta- 
tion, Klan leader Virgil Griffin publicly told the audience at a Klan rally, "If you loved 
your children, you would go shoot 100 niggers and leave their bodies in the street." 
Eddie Dawson's poster, plastered in black public housing communities prior to the 
confrontation, bore the image of a lynched body with the warning to "communists, 
race mixers and black rioters. Even now the cross hairs are on the back of YOUR 


NECK. It's time for some old fashioned American justice."^ The message of the film 
"Birth of a Nation" and of the speeches made at Klan and Nazi rallies glorified the 
oppression and murder of black people. These words are immoral and demand public 
rebuke. However, they also are words that are protected by the U.S. Constitution. The 
Klan and Nazis have the right to express these views. 

Opponents of those views share the same rights. Therefore, the rhetoric used by the 
WVO was also constitutionally protected speech. Yet there is no doubt that the WVO 
embraced inflammatory language and identified with violent symbols. "Death to the 
Klan" was an unfortunate slogan for the parade. Although most have expressed regret 
for this language, survivors have argued that such language was common at the time 
and was intended to threaten an institution and ideology, rather than individuals, but 
such nuance was likely lost on Klan members. 

Other language is more troubling. The WVO made a very militant challenge to the 
Klan via posters, and Paul Bermanzohn said at a news conference, "(The Klan) can 
and will be crushed ... They must be physically beaten back, eradicated, exterminated, 
wiped off the face of the earth. We invite you and your two-bit punks to come out and 
face the wrath of the people." One of the WVO fliers said, "The dogs have no right to 
exist! They must be physically beaten and run out of town. This is the only language 
they understand. "^ 

Although both groups indulged in violent rhetoric, the cultural context of the time 
made the intent and effect of the rhetoric inherently unequal. Despite the inflamma- 
tory language and the ideological identification with violent international figures, the 
Communist Party within the United States does not have a historical pattern of ter- 
rorist acts.^ What's more, communism has never been the dominant ideology in any 
part of the United States, nor has it ever enjoyed the support, direct or indirect, of law 
enforcement authorities. The same cannot be said of the Klan. Founded specifically 
as an insurrectionist terrorist organization, the Klan has counted among its members 
many elected and law enforcement officials, including at least one U.S. president. 

Further the Klan and Nazis who were in the caravan backed up violent language 
with violent actions. For example, there were criminal convictions for shooting into a 
home that reportedly was serving liquor to both blacks and whites, conspiring to blow 
up a union hall in Greensboro, organizing paramilitary training camps for inciting a 

Emphasis in original. 
Emphasis in original. 
The Weathermen are an exception. 


race war, and planning to blow up a gas storage facility in Greensboro. There also 
were admissions of breaking the legs of a black man who was living with a white 
woman, talking about blowing up "race mixing" clubs and bookstores, and burning 
crosses on the lawns of blacks who had moved into white neighborhoods. In contrast, 
the most violent documented acts of the WVO were to engage in target shooting and 
karate training. 

Since its founding, the Klan has been a terrorist group that carried out its threats. With 
two such divergent histories, the majority of Commissioners conclude that it is not 
reasonable to give the threats made by the two groups equal weight as they are not 
equivalent in intent or effect. 

Injustice in tlie justice system 

Three trials addressed the wrongdoing of Nov. 3, 1979: a state criminal trial on capital 
murder charges; a federal criminal trial on charges that the shooters were motivated 
by racial hostility and violated the victims' civil rights; and a civil trial of a lawsuit 
brought by widows of the victims and some of those who sustained injuries. Both 
criminal trials resulted in acquittals by all-white juries and brought widespread public 

We find a problematic jury selection process led to producing panels unrepresentative 
of the community due to many factors including the following: 

■ until 1986, it was entirely legal to strike a potential juror from the panel 
based on his or her race; 

■ sources of jury pools under-represent the poor and people of color. 

We believe that the unrepresentative juries undoubtedly contributed significantly to 
the verdicts. 

Further, although an often repeated explanation for the acquittals is the CWP mem- 
bers' failure to testify, we find that view is flawed for the following reasons: 

1 . The CWP members did cooperate with the federal criminal trial, which also re- 
sulted in acquittals. 

2. The State had other witnesses available to give testimony of the shooting and to 
"humanize the victims." 

3. The view does not take into account the environment of pervasive anti-communism 
in which the trials took place, nor the fact that CWP members faced pending criminal 
charges for riot that gave them reason to believe they could incriminate themselves or 
their associates by testifying. 

The civil trial, which had a jury with one black member, resulted in the nation's first 
finding that members of a U.S. police department (Klan informant handler Det. Cooper 
and parade event commander Lt. Spoon) were jointly liable with white supremacists 
for a wrongful death. While a victory in this regard, the outstanding moral question of 
the failure to find for the other four victims remained. The City paid nearly $400,000 
in settlement for all defendants, including Klan and Nazi defendants, in exchange for 
plaintiffs' release of all defendants from future civil action. This settlement meant 
that the litigation had been resolved, but the pain and moral issues had not. The City's 
payment of this settlement on behalf of the police officers, Klan and Nazi defendants 
gave the appearance to many, rightly or wrongly, of the City's support for or alliance 
with the Klan and Nazis. 

We find one of the most unsettling legacies of the shootings is the disconnect between what 
seems to be a common sense assessment of wrongdoing and the verdicts in the two crim- 
inal trials. When people see the shootings with their own eyes in the video footage, then 
know that the trials led to acquittals, it undermines their confidence in the legal system. 

We also appreciate that, given this imperfection, it is necessary to err on the side of 
acquittals of the guilty to avoid conviction of the innocent. However, when the jus- 
tice system fails to find people responsible when wrongs were committed, it sends a 
damaging signal that some crimes will not be punished, and some people will not be 
protected by the government. In addition, the majority of us believe that the system is 
not just randomly imperfect; rather, it tends to be disproportionately imperfect against 
people of color and poor people. 

Truth commissions are neither mandated nor capable of "re-trying" court cases. In- 
stead, our purpose was to take a fresh and more dispassionate look at the procedural 
and substantive issues involved in these trials and make our own assessment of what 
transpired and whether there were noticeable flaws in the process, either in violation 
of legal standards or basic notions of justice. Another of our aims in this inquiry is to 
reveal how the legal system inevitably reflects and also is influenced by the prevailing 
social and political contexts, and how in this particular case the system failed some 
expectations for justice. 


The chief purpose of a trial, whether criminal or civil, is not to uncover the "truth" of 
the events about which it is concerned. In this way, trials are fundamentally different 
from the task the GTRC has undertaken. Understanding the inherent limitations of 
what was accomplished in the courts helps us clarify and distinguish our own mis- 

The three trials have illustrated each in their own way the limits of our court system 
as it is structured. The "retributive justice" model of the U.S. legal system confines 
judicial inquiries to the proof of a defendant's guilt (criminal cases) or liability (civil 
cases), under a narrowly defined set of laws and rules of procedure. As a result, the 
examination of the role of individuals and institutions, outside of the particular de- 
fendants on trial, is limited solely to their relevance to those particular proceedings. 
Similarly, the scope for defining and addressing other types of harm and other stake- 
holders in the incident is also very narrow. The courtroom is the realm of technical 
knowledge and expertise, with little leeway for richness of context or consequences 
that surround wrongs. 

The promise of "transformative justice" is in drawing the community to the table 
to discuss what wrongs were done, and to whom and by whom. Restorative justice 
also facilitates exchange of diverse perspectives on why these wrongs occurred and 
what should be done. In this way, restorative justice works in concert with retributive 
justice, not as a repeat or replacement of it. By looking at the issues more holisti- 
cally, truth commissions can better diagnose the underlying causes and consequences, 
which may not be relevant to particular legal proceedings. 


City government and community response 

Although the GPD Internal Affairs report was ostensibly released publicly to "make 
the facts known" about Nov. 3, 1979, we found that the public investigation report 
contradicts the police department's own internal documentation in the following 

■ The internal affairs report underestimated the number of Klansmen and Na- 
zis expected to come to the rally and discounted the discussions of guns the 
groups had in their planning. 

■ Concealed that an informant in the Klan had provided the police with this 
information for almost a month prior to the march. 

■ Concealed knowledge of the prior confrontation between the WVO and Klan/ 
Nazis in China Grove and the aggressive challenges made by the WVO to the 

■ Denied knowledge of two gathering points for the parade. 

■ Omitted key officer testimony and left out several crucial transmissions from 
the radio transcript. 

Based on this evidence the majority of Commissioners find that both the GPD and 
key city managers deliberately misled the public regarding what happened on Nov. 3, 
1979, the planning for it and the investigation of it. The majority of Commissioners 
conclude that this was done to shift the responsibility away from the police depart- 

This report fits into an unfortunate pattern of city response to the tragedy. In the wake 
of the killings, city leaders (formal and informal) appeared more concerned with pro- 
tecting the city's image and clamping down on citizen protest in the interest of "se- 
curity," than with meeting the needs of its most vulnerable citizens and helping the 
community process the event and heal. Evidence of this includes 

■ attempting to influence media coverage; 

■ marginalizing findings of the Citizen Review Committee established after the 

■ attempting to stop the Feb. 2, 1980, march against racist violence; 

■ engaging with the Justice Department's Community Relations Service, which 
intimidated people from participating in protests. 


For the majority of Greensboro residents, this response by city leaders reinforced the 
city's image of civihty and distanced them from this event. Likewise, the interpreta- 
tion of the violence as a "shootout" between two "hate groups" who were "outsiders" 
is so often repeated by officials and in the media that it has become the dominant 
community attitude. The rush to find a simple answer for the question, "Why Greens- 
boro?" conveniently kept the community from looking at the complexity and at its 
own role or responsibility. This response effectively polarized the community, despite 
changes that did occur, such as the enactment of anti-discrimination efforts in city 
employment and the change to a district system for representation on City Council. 

For the disempowered communities in Greensboro, the city's repressive response 
served to compound suspicions that the police had some hand in the violence and 
city officials were unwilling to undertake a good faith investigation into wrongdoing. 
Further, the underhanded manner in which the city attempted to suppress citizen pro- 
test worked to foster additional suspicion and fear. These responses fit with a larger 
pattern that persists today and can be seen in the city's relations with the GTRC (see 

The media also played an important role in the community's response to this tragedy. 
While the newspapers fulfilled their duty to report on the basic facts of the event, in 
general we find the mainstream newspapers failed to provide in-depth coverage of 
the context of the shooting. There was little coverage of why the conflict happened 
in Greensboro or of police involvement. Rather, the daily coverage tended to focus 
blame on the two "outsider extremist" sides: the CWP and Klan/Nazis. On the other 
hand, we found the weekly African American-owned Carolina Peacemaker with a 
predominantly African American readership provided more in-depth contextual cov- 
erage, better allowing its readers to decide for themselves the meaning of the event. 


Fear and silence 

Increased fear after Nov. 3, 1979, has had devastating effects on our community. 
Momingside residents were victimized by the shooting happening in their midst, and 
again by the curfew and clamp down on protest. Neighborhood residents felt sanc- 
tioned by the city because this tragedy occurred in their community. Subsequent 
rumors of violence and red-baiting suppressed protest. Fear of economic backlash 
for being associated with those clearly singled out for the city's ire, the Communists, 
further traumatized residents of Momingside and people throughout the city. People 
who were friends and associates of CWP members, or who even encountered them in 
restaurants or on the street, were afraid even to be seen with them because they risked 
loss of jobs, homes, funding for their community projects and the like. 

The CWP members themselves, in addition to losing friends, jobs and more, also felt 
victimized by being denied justice in the court system, being placed under surveil- 
lance and being demonized in the mainstream media. 

The fear surrounding these killings has not gone away. In our own process, we have 
had many citizens who insisted on confidential statements - not because of the content 
of their statements, but because they feared economic or social retaliation simply for 
talking to us. After "talking with people," several key figures who originally agreed 
to speak changed their minds, leading us to conclude that they were discouraged from 
participating. There are many people who could have come forward with informa- 
tion but who did not because of this fear. Fear and the use of vengeful backlash or 
even its threat hampers the community's understanding and ability to move forward. 
We find it ironic that so many of the city's leaders insisted that there was no point to 
establishing the GTRC because, in the words of one city council member, "The real 
truth is that it's a big yawn for this community."^ Such a statement leads us to believe 
many of our elected leaders are either horribly out of touch with, willfully blind to, 
or simply unconcerned about the lingering pain and the stifling workings of power in 
this community. 


"Inquiry shaping how city is perceived," News & Record. March 23.2005 


Grassroots organizing and connection to community concerns 

Although WVO/CWP members felt that they had fully engaged with the Momingside 
community, it is apparent that there were many residents who felt uninformed and 
did not want the "Death to the Klan" rally in their community. The demonstrators' 
protest issues were grounded in the community's economic and social concerns, but 
their politics and tactics were not. Once joining the WVO/CWP, the organizers had 
the added interest of building their party, which further distanced them from the grass- 
roots community. 

Further, there were even those among the membership who raised concerns and cri- 
tiques of the organizing strategy and were overruled and marginalized by the top- 
down leadership. We believe a top-down leadership style is neither empowering nor 
democratic, and ultimately fails as an organizing tactic. 

Despite the CWP's use of violent rhetoric and its hierarchical leadership style, we 
want to affirm the legitimacy of union organizing and the other economic and social 
justice struggles in which CWP members were engaged. We disagree with the com- 
mon practice of demonizing those in the community who challenge the status quo, 
then looking the other way when they are mistreated. 

We find that through organizations including the Greensboro Association of Poor Peo- 
ple (GAPP), the Greensboro CWP members had worked for more than a decade in 
Momingside and other black communities, seeking to empower residents to achieve 
improvements in areas including employment, housing and public education. 

GAPP's programs enjoyed support from many in the black community and had no 
record of violence. Further, the economic and social injustices against which they 
struggled amounted to failures of government to meet humane standards of living 
adequate to basic human needs. Also, despite the tragedy and demonization, many of 
those organizers have remained in Greensboro and continued this work. 

Since many poor workers were employed by N.C. textile mills, focusing attention on 
conditions there made sense both to local organizers and other N.C. organizers with 
whom they were connected through the African Liberation Support Committee and 
later through the Workers Viewpoint Organization, a national group that followed 
Mao Tse- Tung's philosophy of targeting poor workers and rural peasants as the most 
powerful source of revolt. 

Resurgence of the Klan in the mid 1970s, in keeping with its long history of sowing 


fear and divisions through racial violence and its threat, quickly emerged as the big- 
gest obstacle to multiracial organizing in the mills, prompting the WVO's "Death to 
the Klan" campaign. It was an effort shared by unions and other organizers nation- 
wide as the 1970s economic recession spurred a broad revival of white supremacy. 


We believe that when guns are present, particularly in the hands of strongly opposed 
groups confronting each other, the likelihood of violence is often increased. 

However, while the idea of armed self-defense is accepted and deeply imbedded in 
our national identity and tradition, there is a double standard by which armed black 
people are seen as an unacceptable threat. Klan and Nazis' propensity for carrying 
heavy firearms was not discussed in intelligence meetings. On the other hand, Capt. 
Gibson remarked that "My concern was with Nelson Johnson's history of inciting 
riots. And when we had those intelligence briefings (on the Klan and Nazis plans), 
that remained my concern. There was nothing in those briefings that concerned me 
a whole lot." Further, the fact that jurors accepted the dismissal of the first two shots 
on Nov. 3, 1979, fired by the Klan, as "calming" shots in their consideration of the 
self-defense argument is astonishing. 

One positive legacy of Nov. 3, 1979, is a city ordinance that forbids anyone from 
carrying a firearm within 500 feet of a public demonstration. 


We have been constantly asked during our process, "Was Nov. 3, 1979, really about 
race?" Labor organizer Si Kahn offered a clear answer when he said in our first hear- 
ing, "Scratch the surface of any issue in the South and you will find race." 

We found that the events of Nov. 3, 1979, are woven through with issues of race and 
class. Consider these elements: 


A group of demonstrators aiming to empower laborers in a poor black 
neighborhood were holding a "Death to the Klan" rally. 

The leading organizer of the rally was a local black activist who was 
outspoken on issues of racial inequality. This leader was widely demon- 
ized for his role in the city's traumatic 1969 incident of mass racial 
unrest prompted by the "Dudley/A&T Revolt." 

The "Death to the Klan" marchers were shot down by Klan and Nazis 
who were twice acquitted by all-white juries. 

The city acted to try to prevent subsequent citizen protest against the 
Klan and white supremacist violence. 

Imagine for a moment that these elements would have been racially reversed, viewed 
as a photographic negative. Imagine a group of demonstrators is holding a demonstra- 
tion against black terrorism in the affluent white community of Irving Park. A caravan 
of armed black terrorists is allowed to drive unobstructed to the parade starting point, 
and photos are taken by the police as demonstrators are shot dead. Most of the cars 
are then allowed to flee the scene, unpursued, even as they threaten neighborhood 
pedestrians by pointing shotguns through the windows. The defendants are tried and 
acquitted by an all-black jury. The first shots - fired by the blacks screaming "Shoot 
the Crackers!" and "Show me a Cracker with guts and I'll show you a black man with 
a gun!"- are described by black defense attorneys and accepted by jurors as "calming 
shots." Meanwhile, the city government takes steps to block citizen protest of black 
terrorist violence including a curfew in the white neighborhood. The scenario is so 
unlikely as to be preposterous. Yet, in racial reverse, it is exactly what happened. 

Racism, it goes without saying, divides our community and suppresses dialogue. 
It also routinely acts through institutions to disadvantage entire groups of people. 
This is often so in the justice system, which was created by white leaders to protect 
the interests of the majority power structure. The GTRC applauds the efforts of those 
in our community working to bring down these divides. It is our sincere hope that 
we, by analyzing our history and identifying the impediments to reconciliation, have 
provided guidance for our community to evolve into one where people of all races are 
equally respected and protected. 



The consequences of Nov. 3, 1979, were both immediate and long-lasting. As we 
gathered statements in private settings and public hearings, we heard about the mag- 
nitude of consequences directly or indirectly affecting those who were in Morning- 
side Homes on that fatal morning, as well as people who were not present, including 
family members and even those yet unborn. We heard how Greensboro residents 
and social justice activists nationwide were impacted by that day. 

Both negative and positive consequences emerged. Beyond the deaths and physical 
injuries themselves, negative consequences included: 

■ individual psychological trauma, depression, anger and fear; 

■ strained relationships, broken marriages and estranged children; 

■ economic retaliation and social isolation against CWP members and 
their associates, including loss of jobs and economic hardship, surveil- 
lance and a feeling of being under siege; 

■ general distrust of police, the justice system, elected officials and the 

■ exacerbated race and class tensions; 

■ an upsurge in racist violence and hate group activity; 

■ chilled organizing and political activism 

■ increased distrust of outsiders, denial of responsibility for problems; 

■ tacit approval of violence against political dissenters. 

Positive consequences that emerged included: 

■ a strengthened resolve for political activism for some; 

■ a clearer view for many privileged residents of concerns about the justice 
system held by many poor and minority residents. 

■ a possible decision on the part of some community leaders to stop opposing a 
district system of City Council elections. 



Finally, as a grassroots citizen effort that challenges the status quo, we have learned 
firsthand that a pattern of resisting change and suppressing the efforts of those who 
seek it continues in Greensboro. It became clear for the entire city with the rev- 
elations that prompted the police chief's sudden resignation early this year. They 
involved high-level misconduct including institutionalized racial profiling and wire 
surveillance of private citizens including our own executive director. Other elements 
of the city's official response to our process included the following: 

■ City Council voted 6-3, with the three black members dissenting, to op- 
pose the truth and reconciliation process. 

■ Council members promoted rumors about the GTRC intimidating op- 
ponents and sowed confusion about our funding and our relationship to 
the GTCRP. 

■ Information known only to the GTRC, police and city officials was 
leaked to the media, jeopardizing GTRC public hearing testimony. 

■ Police officials met with representatives of Mount Zion Baptist Church 
without GTRC staff about a GTRC event planned there. 

■ Prospective statement givers and community dialogue participants indi- 
cated being discouraged by people outside the GTRC from participating. 

Our experience, which also included mysteriously broken file cabinets containing 
research documents and personnel files, leads us to believe even more strongly that 
our process is relevant and important for revealing the deep brokenness in our com- 
munity and leaders' tendency toward suppression of truth-seeking and other efforts 
to insist on accountability. Although done in the name of protecting community sta- 
bility, this end does not justify the means. Stability is not the same as justice, which 
must be established if the city hopes to restore trust and to heal. 

As the GTRC met with surveillance, intimidation and rumor-mongering at the insti- 
tutional level, at the personal level we found indifference, fear and resistance. The 
mayor once commented to us that he found it "unappetizing" to engage in a process 
that speaks openly about issues of poverty, labor, capital, race and hate. It appears 
that many in our community share his distaste. 

This discomfort and its roots must be honestly examined by individuals and the 
community as a whole. As Thoreau said, it takes two to speak the truth: one to 
speak and one to hear. 




' ",%m'^ 






^^ . \^ 







The retributive justice system is by nature oriented toward the individual, and 
separates that individual from the community in which both perpetrators and victims 
live. In so doing, this system fails to address wider community harms. Aside from 
(unequal) opportunities to serve on juries, everyday community members are not 
often viewed as stakeholders in the process, which is controlled by "experts" who 
often cannot relate to the experiences and perspectives of communities of poor 
people and people of color. As a result, most of the community has no involvement 
in righting wrongs. 

As an exercise in restorative justice, we have taken a larger view and examined the 
wide range of stakeholders harmed by the events of Nov. 3, 1979, and by official 
decisions surrounding it. Our recommendations seek to address the direct harm of 
those who were killed, wounded or psychologically traumatized, as well as what we 
believe were indirect harms suffered by groups including: 

■ residents of the City of Greensboro, which lost ground on human relations 
progress made after school desegregation; 

■ relatives and associates of both CWP demonstrators and Klan-Nazi shoot- 
ers, who were stigmatized and suffered various forms of backlash; 

■ progressive grassroots organizers whose work was made more difficult by 
such processes as red-baiting; 

■ mill workers and other low-income residents who would have been benefi- 
ciaries of more successful organizing for racial and economic justice. 

Recognizing that there is no way to undo the harm caused to individuals and com- 
munities on Nov. 3, 1979, we believe there are positive steps toward reconciliation, 
justice and reparations that can be undertaken. With these goals in mind, we offer 
the following recommendations to the residents of Greensboro, to the government of 
the City and Guilford County, and to other local institutions. Previous commissions 
and review boards have gone before us and offered their own recommendations, 
some of which we wish to place again before the public since they have yet to be 

If organizations to whom recommendations are made feel financially unable to act on them, we recommend that they 
make use of the extensive grant library housed in the Glenwood Branch by the Greensboro Public Library. 


1. Acknowledgement 

This section includes steps to recognize rights and responsibilities and acknowledge 
that wrongs were committed and harms occurred. Usually such steps are called repa- 
rations and aim to make restitution, compensate for harms, rehabilitate, provide sat- 
isfaction to victims and take measures to prevent future abuses. Nothing can restore 
a loved one's life that has been taken, or fully restore the health and well-being of 
those battered by the events, but we believe that some meaningful gestures toward ac- 
knowledgment and redress can help those most harmed see a better future ahead. We 
believe that facing the truth about the past is an important first step toward repair. This 
section also includes measures to incorporate the information about Nov. 3, 1979, into 
the city's official history and collective memory, attend to the second generation of 
survivors, promote dialogue and commemorate what happened. 

a. The City should formally recognize that the events of Nov. 3, 1979, provided a 
tragic, but important occasion in our city's history; it should make a proclamation 
that lifts up the importance of that date in the history of the city. 

b. Individuals who were responsible for any part of the tragedy of Nov. 3, 1979, 
should reflect on their role and apologize - publicly and/or privately - to those 

Throughout this truth and reconciliation process, some individuals (Roland Wayne 
Wood and Nelson Johnson, for example) have issued apologies - in private, in the 
media and at the GTRC's public hearings - about the roles they played in the events 
of Nov. 3, 1979. Such apologies offer hope that community reconciliation is possible 
around these events. We believe that sincere apologies, even after 26 years, are im- 
portant because they open up the possibility for a renewed relationship and dialogue 
between otherwise alienated individuals and groups. 

c. The Greensboro Police Department and the City of Greensboro should issue pub- 
lic apologies for their failure to protect the public - specifically, the Communist 
Workers Party demonstrators, Morningside Homes residents, media representatives 
and others present at the shooting site. These institutions also should issue an apol- 
ogy to city residents for not appropriately acknowledging the event and taking the 
necessary steps for community healing.^ 


For examples of institutional apologies, we recommend that the Greensboro Police Department and City look to the 
recent institutional apologies offered by Wachovia Bank for the role their predecessor company played in financing 
slavery and by the United States Senate for failing to enact anti-lynching legislation. 


d. Others who were involved in the shootings on Nov. 3, 1979, and who regret the 
role they played are encouraged to offer restitution to the victims by making contri- 
butions in their name to support the public monument commemorating this trag- 
edy (see recommendation l.h) or to organizations advocating for civil and workers 
rights and other economic justice initiatives. 

e. The Greensboro Historical Museum and the International Civil Rights Museum 
should work either collaboratively or independently to create exhibits commemorat- 
ing the tragic shootings on Nov. 3, 1979. 

f As described in its Declaration of Intent, the Greensboro Truth and Community 
Reconciliation Project, along with GTRC Report Receivers, should host community 
forums at which this report will be reviewed and discussed. 

A portion of these discussions should offer opportunities for former members of the 
Communist Workers Party, former residents of Momingside Homes, former Klan and 
Nazi members, and others directly involved and impacted by the events to engage in 
meaningful discussions.^ 

g. The religious leadership in Greensboro should plan and facilitate a healing 
workshop or retreat for the children ofCWP members, shooters and others directly 
involved in the events of Nov. 3, 1979. Furthermore, these children should be ac- 
tively consulted in all of the reconciliation and reparation efforts recommended in 
this report. 

h. A public monument should be built on the site of the shootings to honor those 
killed and wounded on Nov. 3, 1979. 

A committee should be formed under the auspices of the City's Human Relations 
Commission for the purpose of planning and fundraising for this monument, and 
should include representatives from the surviving demonstrators and their children, 
former residents of Momingside Homes, neighborhood associations, and other grass- 
roots groups. The committee should decide on the design of the monument.' 

One model for such meaningful dialogue around tragic events can be found in the work of Father Michael Lapsley at 

the Institute for Healing of Memories. 


One Commissioner has suggested that the monument be in the form of a sculpture made firom guns voluntarily donated. 


2. Institutional reform 

This group of recommendations is intended as part of the effort to prevent future 
abuses and ensure that when wrongs do occur there is an adequate response. 

a. City and County government 

/. All city and county employees should be paid a living wage; all city and county 
contractors and sub-contractors should be required to pay workers a living wage. 

Our research into the context and consequences of Nov. 3, 1979, revealed a socio-eco- 
nomic divide that underlies the events of Nov. 3 and continues to plague our community. 
The City of Greensboro and Guilford County should adopt and fully enforce an ordi- 
nance that requires that all employees of the city and county, as well as all employees of 
those companies that contract or sub-contract to provide services or products to the city 
or county, be paid a "living wage"' as determined by the North Carolina Justice Center.^" 

Additionally, we recommend that the City and County jointly seek enabling legisla- 
tion that will allow them to provide incentives to businesses that pay a living wage to 
all employees. 

a. All city and county employees should engage in anti-racism training 

The City of Greensboro and Guilford County should contract with a training group 
such as the People's Institute for Survival and Beyond" to prepare and conduct an 
anti-racism curriculum - like the Institute's "Undoing Racism" workshops - as part of 
the orientation required for all new employees. This training should include develop- 
ing a definition of racism, both institutional and personal; developing an understand- 
ing of the ways that it impacts mental health for individuals; and developing ways to 
recognize it and work towards its elimination. The training should sensitize employ- 
ees about the impacts of racism on the community. 

10 . . 


Furthermore, every employee already working for the City or County should be re- 
quired to complete anti-racism training within a period not to exceed two years. De- 
scriptions of the contents and outcomes of the trainings should be made available to 
the public. Following the training, employees should have opportunities to engage 
with the community members they most affect in their work in order to help them 
gain greater insight from residents about how racism has impacted their community 
relations (e.g. police officers should meet face-to-face with residents in the neigh- 
borhoods they serve in order to better understand the role racism has played in poor 
police/community relations). 

b. City government 

/. The City should issue annual reports on race relations and racial disparities. 

The May 1980 Citizens Review Committee report made the following recommen- 
dation: "The Human Relations Commission should be adequately staffed to moni- 
tor human and race relations and to possess the capability of in-house research and 
documentation." While this has largely been accomplished, we recommend that the 
City go further by regularly consulting with and informing residents about the status 
of race relations and progress on erasing racial disparities within city government as 
well as within the city as a whole. Such an annual report will ensure continued discus- 
sions and work toward ending racial disparities and the impact of racism. Community 
leaders should issue their own report on racial disparities and racism to complement 
the City's report. 

a. The Mayor's Mosaic Project' should be continued and expanded as planned to 
include more people from all sectors of the community. 

The May 1980 Citizens Review Committee report recommended the following: "The 
City Council and other organizations in the City should provide leadership in an effort 
to break down the barriers which separate the citizens in our community." We believe 
that the Mayor's Mosaic Project is a substantial response to this recommendation. Given 
the low levels of cross-cultural trust in Greensboro, the city needs trust-building pro- 
grams like the Mosaic Project, the value of which has affirmed by its first participants. 

Hi. A citizen's committee should be established immediately by the Human Rela- 
tions Commission to create both temporary and permanent police review boards. . greensboro .nc .us/mosaic 


The committee's role would be to determine the respective boards' purposes, pow- 
ers, funding, and relationships to the city government structure. 

In light of the overwhelming current public call for truth-seeking and truth-telling 
with regard to racism and other corruption in the Greensboro Police Department - in- 
cluding allegations of links between this corruption and the historical events including 
Nov. 3, 1979, and even the Dudley/A&T Student Revolt in 1969 - we recommend that 
the City of Greensboro immediately establish a short-term citizen's review board to 
examine these allegations. 

We recommend the permanent board in the interest of ongoing police accountability 
and community trust. Its members should rotate on a regular basis. 

Both boards should have subpoena power as well as significant enforcement power 
and should include representatives from each City Council district. In addition, the 
review boards should include representatives from the Human Relations Commis- 
sion, the Greensboro Bar Association, the Greensboro Neighborhood Congress, the 
Greensboro Chamber of Commerce, the Greensboro chapter of the NAACP, and 
representatives of the community's spiritual leaders. The organizations represented 
should appoint their own board members. 

c. County government 

/. The Guilford County Board of Commissioners should commit to addressing the 
need for increasing funding to Departments of Social Services and Public Health, 
two key agencies serving low-income residents, in order to expand and enhance 
staff and services, and to fund staff sensitivity training. 

a. Social work departments should work in conjunction with advocacy and faith 
organizations to: (l)document the need for increased funding based on information 
from service providers and clients, and (2) urge state and federal policymakers to 
increase funding to Social Services and the Health Department commensurate to 
meet the need in Guilford County. 

Significant reductions in federal, state and county funding available to Social Services 
and the Health Department has resulted in understaffing of these agencies and in- 
creased case loads for the remaining staff, which contributes to insensitivity to clients 
and inability to provide needed services. 


HI. The Guilford County Schools should create a curriculum based on the events of 
Nov. 3, 1979, for use in public elementary and secondary schools. 

The Commission recommends that the Guilford County Schools contract with an ap- 
propriate curriculum development provider'^ to create a curriculum for elementary 
and secondary schools about the context, causes, sequence and consequences of the 
events of Nov. 3, 1979. This curriculum could include the following topics: the actual 
events of Nov. 3, 1979, the history of many civil rights organizations, labor move- 
ments and white supremacist organizations; and related legal issues (definitions, roles 
of prosecutors and defense, jury selection, the importance of jury duty, retributive 
vs. transformative justice, etc.). The GTRC report itself could be made part of this 

The curriculum also should include segments and open discussions that address re- 
lated context issues including anti-racist education about slavery and respecting di- 

d. Justice system 

i. Citizens as well as city and state officials should push for enabling legislation, if 
necessary, to create a community justice center in Greensboro, then make sure its 
existence is well-publicized. 

The outcomes of the three trials following Nov. 3, 1979, highlighted the limits of our 
retributive justice system, reflecting a need for more opportunities to apply restorative 
justice. These limitations, combined with the low levels of trust in the justice system 
among people of color and poor people lead us to recommend the creation of a com- 
munity justice center in Greensboro. A good example is the Red Hook Community 
Justice Center (RHCJC)''' in Brooklyn, N.Y. Through the RHCJC, the Red Hook 
District Attorney's office used the center to process misdemeanor cases by first as- 
sessing underlying problems that led to the alleged criminal activity. Care is taken 
to ensure the public's safety; sentences incorporate available RHCJC services includ- 
ing intensive drug treatment, mediation, anger management, high school equivalency 
classes and youth groups. 

Citizens as well as city and state officials should push for enabling legislation, if 
necessary, to create a community justice center in Greensboro, then make sure its 


Possibilities are the Center for Diversity Education ( or the North CaroHna As- 
sociation of Educators ( 


existence is well-publicized. 

a. The protocol for selecting jurors should be revised to expand the pool of poten- 
tial jurors. 

Currently, potential jurors are selected from a list created by the Department of Motor 
Vehicles, which compiles the list using driver's license and voter registration data. 
Because these lists are not representative of the community as a whole, we recom- 
mend that state law be modified so that the pool of potential jurors can be drawn 
from additional lists such as utility bills, welfare rolls and the U.S. Postal Service's 
database of address changes. 

Citizens as well as city and state officials should push for enabling legislation to ex- 
pand the pool of potential jurors to be more representative of the community as a 

e. Local media outlets 

/. The largest local newspaper, the Greensboro News & Record, should act alone 
or in concert with other media outlets including the Carolina Peacemaker, Yes! 
Weekly, and the Rhinoceros Times to host a citywide citizen group that would com- 
ment on news process, content, quality and ethics. 

The absence of in-depth local news coverage of the context of Nov. 3, 1979, and its 
aftermath played a central role in the community misunderstanding of that event. As 
Greensboro community members struggle decades later to reconcile the competing 
views of why the tragedy occurred and what should be done now, the media can 
play an important role in helping community members move beyond contested facts, 
frames and claims to a common understanding. In addition to informing the public, 
media can and should play a role in fostering dialogue and exchange of views. 

Also, a diverse citizen group could improve local journalism and the community- 
building role it can play. Citizen input should be solicited for: story development, 
source development, recognizing other perspectives, critique of news coverage, com- 
mentary on newspaper practices and suggestions for better addressing community 


Grants are available to involve citizen input in newspaper reporting from foundations such as the Pew Center 

for Civic Journalism ( Other resources are available from organizations such as the Kettering 
Foundation ( Grade the News (, and Community Journalism (www.rtnda. 


f. Other institutions 

L Other community organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce should en- 
gage in anti-racism training similar to that described in Recommendation 2.a.ii. 

a. The City of Greensboro and other organizations should provide resources to 
support the participation of grassroots leaders in local or out-of-state programs and 
activities that affirm and enhance their leadership ability. 

Many of the existing leadership programs sponsored through prestigious organiza- 
tions like the Center for Creative Leadership are generally cost prohibitive to low 
income grassroots leaders. Citizens are rarely empowered to hold institutions and 
power figures accountable for injustices in the community. Community institutions 
that impact the entire community across race and class lines are usually composed 
of middle/upper class and highly educated people. This leadership needs to be more 
diverse to include lived experience of all sectors of the community so all perspectives 
can be given adequate consideration in the policies and practices of the city and its 

Reconciliation can happen when diverse leaders are in the same room, learning from 
each other and developing personal relationships. These leadership programs should 
be easily accessible to the widest range of leaders from diverse racial and socio-eco- 
nomic backgrounds for the maximum benefit to all involved.'^ 

Hi. In response to unresolved crises or lingering issues in the community, such as 
the issues surrounding the events of Nov. 3, 1979, city officials, religious leaders 
and civic organizations should play an active role in acknowledging, investigating 
and providing open forums for discussion. 

3. Criminal justice and civil remedies 

a. The current investigations into the alleged corruption in the Greensboro Police 
Department, including the surveillance of citizens, should be thoroughly and ex- 
peditiously completed. We recommend that the reports of these investigations be 
publicly released once they are finalized and a town hall meeting held to solicit 

An example of a program with similar goals and methods is the Greensboro Civic Entrepreneurship Initiative 
sponsored by the Pew Charitable Trust that took place from 1998 through 2000 


citizen questions and feedback. If appropriate, criminal prosecutions or civil action 
should be pursued to help heal the damaged credibility of the police department and 
reassure the citizens that there is accountability for illegal acts done by the city's 

4. Citizen transformation/engagement 

a. Recognizing the role they play in creating the environment for events like Nov. 
3, 1979, individual community members must commit to understanding issues of 
capital, labor, race, poverty, oppression, privilege and justice, and exploring ways to 
have a positive impact on the way they play out in the community. 

Individuals should take the initiative to engage in study and dialogue within diverse 
groups to understand various ideologies or other beliefs present in the community, es- 
pecially unpopular ones. They should seek to understand their own part in community 
problems as well as their potential role in finding workable solutions. 

Institutions should exist for the welfare of ALL citizens in a healthy democracy. The 
process of pushing institutions to become accountable to the citizens they are sup- 
posed to serve assumes and involves a collective citizenry that understands and prac- 
tices principles of democracy and participation. In a large democracy such as ours, 
this is a learned skill that includes responsibilities, rights and privileges. 

b. Individuals, like institutions, can benefit from anti-racism and diversity educa- 
tion programs, and we encourage people to take advantage of pre-designed pro- 
grams they first evaluate for both breadth and depth. 

Unless individuals learn based on an alternative analysis of the society we live in and 
unlearn biases and misinformation at the same time, many diversity programs may 
become mere "Band-aids" rather than solutions. The following questions should be 
asked of any such program: Does it provide historical perspective on power, privilege, 
oppression, and economic and social injustice? Do people learn about the various 
manifestations of racism, classism, sexism and other forms of oppression? Are par- 
ticipants given the opportunity to examine their individual roles? 


The way forward 

While the above recommendations are directed toward specific institutions, we recom- 
mend that all grassroots community organizations, religious leaders and, specifically, 
the Greensboro Truth and Community Reconciliation Project, work collectively with 
each other and city and county government to advocate for the effective implementa- 
tion of these recommendations. 

To other communities considering processes to seek the truth and work for reconcili- 
ation around tragic, unjust events in their own histories, we heartily recommend the 
truth and reconciliation model as such a tool. 

We believe the truth and reconciliation process in Greensboro opened up the debate 
around Nov. 3, 1979, in a positive way and has successfully engaged a broad spectrum 
of the community in an effort that offers hope for reconciliation. As a Commission that 
looks a bit like Greensboro in microcosm, we found that this process — and our own 
struggle to hear and understand each other — had a profound impact on our percep- 
tions of the issues we explored. Our individual and collective commitment to the truth 
helped us persevere. And the human stories and emotions we encountered along the 
way moved us to do our best to leave behind a legacy we hope will serve Greensboro 
for years to come. We cannot say what the future will hold for this community or what 
the long-term impact of this process will look like, but we hope that this process also 
serves as a learning tool for others in this country who, like Greensboro, are burdened 
by a legacy of hurt and inspired by the possibility of honestly coming to terms with 
their own history. 


Respectfully submitted to the residents of Greensboro, the City, the Greensboro 
Truth and Community Reconciliation Project and other public bodies on May 25, 
2006, by the Greensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission: 

Cynthia Brown 

Patricia Clark 

Dr. Muktha Jost 

mJa %o±kf<Juy\(JU 

Angela Lawrence 

Robert Peters 

(subject to his concurring opinion) 


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Rev. Dr. Mark Sills 

Barbara Walker 


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Commissioner reflections can be found in the annex of the complete report. 





Monetary donations from foundations 

This report and the work of the GTRC has been made possible through the generous 
support - financial and otherwise - of the following foundations. In particular, we 
want to thank the Andrus Family Fund for its significant initial gift that made it seem 
financially possible for this project to happen. The JEHT Foundation's gift also pro- 
vided an additional financial base that allowed for hiring staff. Finally, we recognize 
the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro for its contributions and for acting 
as the GTRC's fiscal sponsor, receiving and handling our finances. 

Andrus Family Fund $ 1 85 ,000 

Anonymous Fund $2,000 

Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro $ 1 3 ,000 

Ervin L. Brisbon Fund $6,000 

Fenwick Foundation $ 1 ,000 

InSight Fund of the Triangle Community Foundation $ 1 ,500 

JEHT Foundation $ 1 50,000 

NC Humanities Council $ 1 ,200 

Romano Family Fund $10,000 

Julian Price Family Fund $2,000 

Wachovia Foundation $ 1 ,000 

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation $30,000 

Grassroots donations 

At its heart, this work is a grassroots effort, so generous donations from everyday 
individuals have sustained the GTRC. The following individuals and organizations 
contributed either through direct financial donations, fundraiser attendance or other 

Carolyn Allen Phyllis Carter 

Vance Arnold Justin Catanoso & Laurelyn Dossett 

Terry Austin Stone Circles 

Cleta Baker Patricia Clark 

Ira & Susie Bell The Community Church of Chapel Hill 

Paul & Sally Bermanzohn Sally Cone 

Stephen & Pat Bocckino Constance Curry 

Mary Beth Boone Eileen Curry 

Lewis A. Brandon, III George Dimock 

Ann O'L Brown Grant Draper 

Millicent Brown Dean Driver 


Linda Dunn 

Episcopal Diocese of NC 

Mary Ellen B. Fairchild 

Faith Community Church 

John Farmer 

Stephen Flynn 

Kathym Foran 

Bob Fox worth 

Herbert & Jane Foy 

Terrence Gleeson 

Elizabeth Godwin 

Lucius & Norma Gray 

Stephanie Wells Green 

Group Process Consulting 

Emily Harwell 

Mary Hennessey 

Brenda Hines 

Daisy Holland 

Rev. Z.N. & Charlene Holler 

Claudia Horwitz 

George & Sara House 

Martha Hughes-James 

Spoma Jovanovic 

Nelson & Joyce Johnson 

Randy & Grace Johnston 

Mark & Muktha Jost 

Charles Jones 

Sue & James F Keith, Jr. 

John & Ellen Kepchar 

Robin Kirk 

Julianne Knight 

Timothy & Robin Lane 

Anthony Ledford 

Neil Lemer 

Liberation Baptist Church 

Kay Lovelace 

Lisa Magarrell 

Bishop Chip Marble 

Randall Mardus 

Easter Maynard & John Parker 

Vicki McCready 

Jennifer McHugh 

Suzanne Mengert 

Margaret Misch 

Farah Marie Mokhtareizadeh 

Rosemary Molinary 

Drs. Lawrence & Claire Morse 

Mary Montgomery 

Elijah Mungo 

Marty Nathan 

Clarence & Helen Parker 

Bob & Dot Peters 

Thomas & Suzanne Plihcik 

Marlene Pratto 

Kathryn Pryor 

Robert & Lucy Scott Pryor 

Scott Pryor 

Ronald Pudlo 

Larry Queen 

Kit Ravenel 

Peter J. Santogade 

Kathleen Shapley-Quinn 

Beth Sheffield 

Lora Smith 

James Squire 

Teresa Staley 

Darryl Stith & Samye Miller 

Pablo Stone 

John & Carol Stonebumer 

Steve Sumerford 

Willie Lee Taylor 

University Presbyterian Church 

Leslie Urban 

Janice Wakefield 

Mary Wakeman 

Barbara Walker 

James Warren 

Caron Wedeking 

Joya Wesley 

Terrence & Mary Wessling 

Dorman & Sarah Williams 

Jill Williams 

Maryanna Williams 

Meena S. Wilson 

Peter Wohlwend 

N.C. A&T Women's Studies Department 

John Young 

Emily Zeanah 


In-kind donors 

Although financial support is critical, many organizations offered in-kind donations 
that outweighed any direct monetary gifts they could make. The following organiza- 
tions offered in-kind donations in ways including gifts for our volunteers, hosting our 
website, providing images and text from newspaper coverage, meeting space, food, 
assistance with security for our events, technical services and equipment for our pub- 
lic hearings and television programs. 

Adam Zucker NC A&T State University Television Studio 

Applebee's (Battleground Ave.) New Garden Friends Meeting 

Bennett College for Women News & Record 

Bruegger's Bagels (Friendly) Outback Steakhouse (Four Seasons) Panera Bread 

Carolina Peacemaker Qdoba's Mexican Grille 

Chick-fil-a Sound Lab Recording Studio 

Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro Rhinoceros Times 

Davenport. Marvin, Joyce and Co., L.L.P. Sam's Club 

Harris Teeter Target 

Golden Corral (Lawndale Ave.) Televisual Productions 

The Green Bean Tuscana Cuisine 

Greensboro Police Department UNCG's American Democracy Project 

Kimber Guard and Patrol Yes! Weekly 

Maxie B's (Battleground Ave.) 

Mayflower Restaurant 

Advisors and report consultants 

Many individuals have contributed their experience and wisdom to enhancing our 
public hearings, community dialogue and final report. In particular, we appreciate 
the sustained guidance offered by our principal advisor, Lisa Magarrell of the Interna- 
tional Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ), who has been consulting with the truth 
and reconciliation process in Greensboro since its inception. We also thank Lisa and 
the ICTJ for facilitating contacts with many of the following advisors, both in and 
outside of the United States. We also thank Irving Joyner for serving as a primary 
legal advisor as we have struggled to understand the legal complexities surrounding 
the events of Nov. 3, 1979. 


Catherine Admay, Professor.of Law and Public Policy, Duke University 

David Billings, Trainer, The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond 

Arthur Blundell, Chair, Panel of Experts to Liberia, United Nations 

Alex Boraine, former President, ICTJ. and former deputy chair, South Africa TRC 

Carolyn Blum, Lecturer-in-Law, Columbia University 

Millicent Brown, Associate Professor of History, North Carolina A&T State University 

William Chafe, Professor of History, Duke University 

Roger Conner, Andrus Family Fund 

David Cunningham, Associate Professor of Sociology, Brandeis University 

Carlos Ivan Degregori, Visiting Professor of Sociology, Princeton University, former Commissioner, 

Peruvian TRC 

E. Franklin Dukes, Director, Institute for Environmental Negotiation, University of Virginia 

John Esmerado, Assistant Prosecutor, Union County, State of New Jersey 

Rev. Bongani Finca, former Commissioner, South African TRC 

Madeline Fullard, former Researcher, South African TRC 

Eduardo Gonzalez, Senior Associate, ICTJ, and former member of the staff of the Peruvian TRC 

Suzana Grego, Communications Director. ICTJ 

Priscilla Hayner, Director, International Policymakers Unit, ICTJ 

Deena Hurwitz. Director, Human Rights Program, University of Virginia School of Law 

Marvin Johnson, Andrus Family Fund 

Spoma Jovanovic, Assistant Professor of Communication, UNC Greensboro 

Irv Joyner, Professor of Law, North Carolina Central University 

Steve Kelban, Andrus Family Fund 

Robin Kirk, Coordinator, Human Rights Initiative, Duke University 

Robert Korstad, Associate Professor of History and Public Policy, Duke University 

Neil Lemer, Associate Professor of Music, Davidson College 

Sofia Macher, former Commissioner, Peruvian TT^C 

Lisa Magarrell, Senior Associate, ICTJ 

Graeme Simpson, Country Program Director, ICTJ 

Judge Stephen Swanson, Fourth District Court, State of Minnesota 

Paul van Zyl, Program Director, ICTJ 

Monica Walker, Trainer, The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond 


Volunteers and Other Contributors 

Without the help of the following people, the GTRC could not have completed its 
work. These individuals contributed to this process in a variety of ways includ- 
ing: serving as Commissioners; taking, transcribing and summarizing statements; 
encouraging people to give statements; volunteering at public events; collecting 
newspaper articles or other research material; performing at and/or helping plan 
benefit concerts; conducting surveys about our public events; filming and editing our 
public events and our public access television show; and many other responsibilities 
vital to this work. 

Amy Ambachtsheer 
Enjonae Anderson 
Lila Anton 
Winston Argyle 
Vance Arnold 
Brianna Atkins 
Terry Austin 
Kathleen Baireuther 
Jen Baker 
Mike Barber 
Christian Barbie 
Michael Battle 
Robin Baxter 
Tim Bazzle 
Sheldon Beatty 
Susie Bell 
Patricia Benton 
Bill Beyer 
Patricia Black 
Eliza Blake 
Cleta Baker 
Riley Baugus 
Eliza Blake 
Caroline Blair 
Michael Blunck 
Art Blundell 
Mary Beth Boone 
Raymond Bowden 
Steve Borla 
Lewis A. Brandon, III 
Sarah Brassard 
Kyle Brebner 
Alexander Breznay 
Jessica Bridges-Green 
Lya Wesley Britt 
Megan Brooks 

Melinda Brooks 
Cynthia Brown 
Warren Buford 
Andrew Calhoun 
Vickie Calise 
Larry Canady 
April Cannon 
Willena Cannon 
Kendrick Carter 
Keith Carter 
Shelena Chavis 
Esther Cheung 
Meenakshi Chivukula 
Bruce Clark 
Orleana Clark 
Patricia Clark 
Genna Cohen 
Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole 
Andy Coon 
Laurie Cripe 
Terryoka Crump 
Jennifer Dail 
Kendra Dalton 
Helen Dannat 
Ellen DeHaven 
Peter Dennis 
Drew Diamond 
George Dimock 
John Doherty 
Sarah Dorsey 
Laurelyn Dossett 
Riley Driver 
Rene Drummer 
Uchenna Evans 
George Ewing 
Mary Ellen B. Fairchild 

Pat Fairfield-Artman 
Damon Fay 
Tiare Ferguson 
Ted Fetter 
Sarah Finkelstein 
Matt Fishbein 
Kate Fletcher 
Steve Flynn 
Kate Foran 
Chauncey Ford 
Liz Fortune 
Sam Frazier 
Sarah Gates 
Bill Gentry 
Jewel Gibson 
Lamar Gibson 
Roslyn Gibson 
Shannon Gibson 
Terrence Gleeson 
Elizabeth Godwin 
Kim Goldstein 
Rachel Goldstein 
Kaitlyn Gonsiewski 
Tanya Goodman 
Lee Gordon 
Steve Gordon 
Ashely Gravely 
Alexandra Gray 
Jordan Green 
Marcus Green 
Sarah Gunther 
Sam Hamlin 
Bob Hammond 
Naman Hampton 
Steve Haines 
Jon Harbison 


Samantha Hargrove 

Nancy Harman 

Molly Hartman 

Claire Harwell 

Cristi Head 

Mary Kay Hennessey 

Lauren Herman 

John Hicks 

Stephanie Hill 

Robbie Hilton-Smith 

Brenda Hines 

Genevieve Hofstetter 

Ben Holder 

Daisy Holland 

Amaris Howard 

Rev. Carole Howard 

Aliene de Souza Howell 

Kristen Howell 

Martha Hugh-James 

Chelsea Hughes 

Emily Hulburt 

Lib Hutchby 

Deborah Isenhour 

Jonathan Jenkins 

Ben Jensen 

Maria Jessop 

Davina Johnson 

Randy Johnston 

Charles Jones 

Lauren Jones 

Sara Joseph 

Alec Jost 

Diya Jost 

Mark Jost 

Muktha Jost 

Spoma Jovanovic 

Evan Katin-Borland 

Christin Keil 

Sue & James Keith, Jr. 

Mary Kendall 

Mary Kendrick 

Heather Kilpatrick 

Brynne Kirk 

Si Kahn 

Julianne Knight 

Yosuke (Bruce) Kobayashi 

Mark Lafleur 

Angela Lawrence 

Sabena Leake 

Lorca Lechuga-Haeseler 

Ciara Lilly 
David Lisak 
Michael Litwack 
Kay Lovelace 
Stephanie Lyons 
Traci Machiavema 
Suvi Makitalo 
Ryan Maltese 
Beth Manly 
Bishop Chip Marble 
Giulia Marchiori 
Christina Marensen 
Chelsea Marshall 
Sarah Marshall 
Stacey Mason 
Chellie Mason 
Jerry McBride 
Jerry McClough 
Katie McCown 
Vicki McCready 
Kendra McDonald 
Caesar McDowell 
Jennifer McHugh 
Suzanne Mengert 
Devin Mervin 
Margaret Misch 
Brittany Mizell 
Wanda Mobley 
Michael Moore 
Terry Moore-Painter 
Elijah Mungo 
Virginia Niehaus 
Sudie Nallo 
Eva Nudd 
Amy Owens 
Kelle Owens 
Tanya Owens-Phillips 
Jamie Papada 
John Parker 
Kristi Parker 
Rev. Julie Peepies 
Matt Perault 
James Pierce 
D'Ann Penner 
Kim Perkins 
Bob & Dot Peters 
Anna Pinkert 
Lewis Pitts 
Martine Powell 

Lucy Scott Pryor 
Scott Pryor 
Ronald & Jean Pudlo 
Ben Ramsey 
Laura Registrato 
Angelica Reza 
Rev. Harold Robinson 
Laura Robinson 
Scott Roehm 
Renee Romano 
Rebecca Rossiter 
Thomas Rowan 
Kent Ruffin 
Christina Sanchez 
Peter Santogade 
Jonathan Santos 
Andy Savoy 
Nell Schaffer 
Beth Sheffield 
Amy Scheuerman 
Pete Schroth 
Eric Schultz 
Tony Scott 
Laura Seel 
Vicki Shabo 

Kathleen Shapley-Quinn 
Matt Shelton 
Myra Shird 
Mark Sills 
Judy Simmons 
Kent Singletary 
Eric Smith 
Lora Smith 
Matthew Spencer 
James Squire 
Teresa Staley 
Maggie Stan- 
Carol Steger 
Sarah Stein 
Teresa Styles 
Steve Sumerford 
Caitlin Swain-McSurely 
Gary Todd 
Melody Thomas 
Paula Thomas 
Judith Thompson 
Caitlyn Toombs 
Shona Trumbo 
Jamie Uss 
Stephanie Vance 


Allison Van Hee 
Alexic Vaughn 
Kish Vinayagamoorthy 
Alex Vizzier 
Janice Wakefield 
Barbara Walker 
James Warren 
Todd Warren 
Valerie Warren 
Stefanie Watson 
Fred Wesley 
Gertie Wesley 

Cory Weschler 
Mary Wessling 
Wally West 
Rodney Westmoreland 
Eric Whitaker 
Aimee White 
Jacinta White 
Ed Whitfield 
Sheila Whitley 
Dr. Claudette Williams 
Neubia Williams 
Joan Williams 

Cameron Wilkin 
Dixon Williams 
Julie Williams 
Maryanna Williams 
Neubia Williams 
Dr. Meena Wilson 
Courtney Wingate 
Jesse Young 
John Young 
Emily Zeanah 

Greensboro Truth and Community Reconciliation Project 

The Greensboro Truth and Community ReconciHation Project (GTCRP) launched the demo- 
cratic process that created this Commission. Numerous individuals worked through the Project 
at various points in the organization's history, which dates back to 2001. (Names provided by 
the GTCRP). 

Selection Panel 

The following individuals were appointed to the Selection Panel, which worked independently 
of the Project and its initiators to whittle 67 community nominations to our panel of seven 


Appointing Group/Individual 

Dara Edelman 

Linda Brown 

Dorothy Brown 

Edward Whitfield 

Judge Lawrence McSwain 

George Hines 

Curtis Douglas 

Badi Ali 

Sylvia Berkelhammer 

Viola Fuller 

Steve Simpson 

Rev. Eric Griffin 

Donny Brown 

Bishop Woodrow Dawkins 

Local college and university student body presidents 

Local college and university chancellors & presidents 

Greensboro Neighborhood Congress 


Mayor of Greensboro 

Guilford County Democratic Party 

Guilford County Republican Party 

Muslim Community 

Jewish Community 



Pulpit Forum 

Triad Central Labor Council 

Community Representative 


Local Task Force 

The following individuals served at some point on the GTCRP's Local Task Force, which first 
gathered in the spring of 2002. 

Carolyn Allen 

Melvin Alston 

Margaret ArbuckJe 

Vance Arnold 

Marilyn Baird 

Dr. Claude Barnes 

Dr. Ernest Bradford 

Lewis A. Brandon, HI 

Rev. Cardes Brown 

Donny Brown 

Claudette Burroughs- White 

Willena Cannon 

Vivian Clarke 

Nettie Coad 

Carolyn Coleman 

Rev. Mary Crawford 

Eileen Curry 

Dr Robert Davis 

Vemie Davis 

Libby Dener 

Rev. Frank Dew 

Rev. Jim Dollar 

Tom Droppers 

Rev. Chris East 

Rev. Lou East 

John Farmer 

Rev. Eric Griffin 

Rabbi Fred Guttman 

Casey Hazelman 

Rev. Greg Headen 

Dick Hoard 

Robert Holcombe 

Catherine Holcombe 

Daisy Holland 

Rev. Z.N. Holler 

Rev. Nelson Johnson 

Joyce Johnson 

Yvonne Johnson 

Randy Johnston 

Spoma Jovanovic 

Jim Keith 

Rev. Frank Kelleher 

Rev. Vernon King 

Kay Lovelace 

Bishop Alfred "Chip" Marble 

Chellie Mason 

Rev. Kenneth Massey 

Kenyona Matthews 

Rev. Heather McCain 

Angus McGregor 

Rev. Beth McKee-Huger 

Dr Charmaine McKissick-Melton 

Sue Mengert 

Rev, Lucretia Middleton 

Alexis Mitchell 

Dr Roy Moore 

John Morrison 
Dr. Lawrence Morse 
Liz Nemitz 
Marsha Paludan 
John Parker 
Suzanne Plihcik 
Lewis Pitts 
Kit Ravenel 
Rev. Marvin Richmond 
Dr Richard Rosen 
Laura Seel 
Matthew Shelton 
Portia Shipman 
Stephen Simpson 
Carolyn Standi 
Carol Steger 
Janice Sullivan 
Steve Sumerford 
Minister Phillip Tate 
Jeff Thigpen 
Dr. Signe Waller 
Ed Whitfield 
Peter Wohlwend 
Rev. William Wright 
John Young 
Emily Zeanah 

National Advisory Committee 

The following individuals served on the GTCRP's National Advisory 
Committee, which first gathered in March 2002. 

Donald and Carolyn Allen 
Jose Alvarez 
Dr. Sally Bermanzohn 
Sandy Bermanzohn 
Dr. Anne Braden 
Lewis A. Brandon, HI 
Alex Chams 
Vaughn Crandall 
Constance Curry 
Dr Robert Davis 
Rev. James Fenhagen 
Joseph Frierson 
Dr Vincent Harding 
Priscilla Hayner 
Rev. Z.N. Holler 
Charlene Holler 

Beni Ivey 

Rev. Nelson Johnson 
Joyce Johnson 
Steve Kelban 
Sabena Leake 
Lucy Lewis 
Lisa Magarrell 
Dr Peggy Maisel 
Emily Mann 
Rabbi Robert Marx 
Dr Cesar McDowell 
Andrew McThenia 
Ched Myers 
Cynthia Nance 
Dn Marty Nathan 
Suzanne Pharr 

Rev. Tyrone Pitts 

Scott Pryor 

Kerry Raquel Little 

Harris Raynor 

Dr. Gloria Scott 

Stephen Simpson 

Dr Peter Storey 

Dr William Strickland 

Rev. Doug Tanner 

Ruth Trujillo 

Dr Signe Waller 

Honorable Melvin Watt 

Dr Eve Weibaum 

Kent Wong 



reensboro Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report 




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cess the GTRC's archives, please visit Bennett College for Women (